the first sunday of christmas
the PRAYER. . .
O Lord God, you know that we cannot place our trust in our own powers. As you protected the infant Jesus, so defend us and all the needy from harm and adversity, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
the READING. . .
This was to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet, “Out of Egypt I have called my son.”
the DEVOTION. . .
We read everything so literally. Newspaper! Facebook! Bible! We take it all at face-value! As if it’s a science book or a math text. Every letter, every word, having only one meaning. It’s no wonder it’s so hard for us to read the bible … we’re terrified of getting it wrong!
Thing is, scripture’s not a formula or an equation; it’s a story. And stories are living, breathing things. Saying different things to different people, at different times, in different places. And that’s okay. That’s why one book can mean so much to so many for so long. It’s able to provide what readers need. To see. To hear. Not in some supernatural, otherworldly kind of way. But because that’s, just, what story does!
Like this week … We hear the story about the escape to Egypt, the massacre, the return and, immediately, we’re back in Judea, 7-6 BC[E], and Herod’s king. Truth is, we all have a kingHerod sometime in our life. We face threats. Run from massacres. Even spend time in exile. Waiting. Watching. For the right time to return. We grieve. We remember. We dream. Just like Joseph! Like Mary! Like Jesus! And God calls each of us out of our very own Egypts! Daughters, as well as sons!
Bob Barndt, pastor